New recruitment agency tackles skills shortage that threatens UK economy

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New recruitment agency tackles skills shortage that threatens UK economy

Research suggests 70 per cent of UK businesses could struggle to bounce back from the recession due to chronic shortages in software developer talent and antiquated technologies.

London 1st September 2020 – The tech sector’s resilience, coupled with a growing need for remote-accessible and secure IT infrastructure, has ensured it has weathered the COVID storm better than most. However, as 77 per cent of UK businesses now consider themselves a technology company – no matter the industry they operate in – and with 82 per cent of IT leaders in the UK expecting to increase or maintain their headcount this year, a pre-existing talent gap deepens. 

develop, has launched to meet the needs of organisations seeking top technical talent in the UK and Europe. develop will only recruit candidates within the realm of software, bringing new meaning to the term “niche agency”. 

Kevin Hammond, Co-Founder and CEO at develop, said, “I’ve worked as a specialist technology recruiter for more than a decade, and in that time, I’ve heard one complaint more than any other: recruitment consultants don’t know enough about the software jobs they are hiring for.

“This is a real frustration for businesses who work with agencies in the first place to make their lives easier. It’s a particular problem in the technology industry, where things are constantly changing. A consultant really needs to know their Java from their JavaScript – and that’s a bare minimum.”

In response to this, all of develop’s consultants learn to code, taking courses relevant to the jobs they are hiring for. Mr Hammond believes that this will help better the consultants’ understanding of both the required job specification and the individual candidate’s skills and experiences. 

With unemployment at a record high, many businesses assume hiring will become easier. However, as the average application-to-job ratio has risen by 84 per cent in the second quarter of 2020, hiring managers face a tougher time than ever in trying to find the right candidate. 

Indeed, as the tech sector has fared better than others, there is no reason to believe there are thousands of skilled developers currently eagerly seeking new job opportunities. 

Managing Director and Co-Founder, Joey Tait, added, “Posting a job advert alone is very unlikely to yield results. Unless you are a really big brand, the chances are that the candidate you’re looking for will never see it – and if they do, yours will be one of several. Organisations need to be much more proactive about talent attraction.”

The COVID crisis comes ahead of the UK’s official exit from the European Union, at the end of this year, already a cause for concern for those seeking software talent. Prior to the pandemic, two thirds of CIOs and IT decision makers thought the UK to be in danger of losing vital software development post-Brexit.

The technology sector is vital to the country’s economy, with research showing that £76 billion could be wiped out from the UK’s GDP if IT developer time is not utilised properly. In addition, nearly seven in 10 developers in the UK say that outdated technology systems are holding their businesses back. 

“UK organisations need to get to grips with a changed world and prepare for what might still be to come,” Mr Tait said. “Software roles are among the most important for companies now and in the future. 

“While the recruitment market is well-served by a plethora of tech recruitment companies, few are true and pure specialists in the field of software development roles. That’s why develop was born.”

develop is a 20-strong team based in London, serving the UK and Europe. The agency specialises in placing candidates skilled in .NET, Java, JavaScript, Python, Technology and Change.


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